Is THIS Bliss?!

Lorina's Blog

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The First Four Weeks

Alrighty. Here’s my progress photos from the first of the year. Not a huge amount of change, but not really expecting much in just four weeks, and only lifting three of the last four weeks. And especially since I had birthday cake for breakfast four of the last seven days.

When I was actively blogging last time, I was more than a bit obsessive. I’m an over-tracker. I’d log my weight and every bite I ate, track my exercise on Runkeeper, MyFitnessPal, Fitocracy and a spreadsheet on my computer, plus a few running challenges on MFP, as well as taking measurements, progress photos and calculating my body fat percentage. My results were great. I looked fantastic. I felt great. Mostly. But in retrospect… it was fucking nuts.

Now, I haven’t logged my food since sometime in July. I get on the scale once in a while, but I don’t record my weight. I will take measurements at some point in the future, but that will be before sewing so I make the right size dress or costume. I still use Runkeeper… at least until my phone crashes and I lose my date (I broke my good phone and I’m using a dinosaur until I’m eligible for an upgrade). I just started using Fitocracy again to keep track of my lifts. I pop into MFP once in a while, but I rarely post. I will take progress photo, because I find them the most motivating.

Overall, I’m ok with how I look. I wouldn’t mind being a little leaner and more defined, but I’m not going to drive myself bonkers trying to achieve it. If it happens while I’m doing activities I enjoy and eating well (which is mostly nutrient dense foods in a good balance, with some yummy treats), wonderful. If it doesn’t, I’m still doing activities I enjoy and eating well.

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Happily Ever During

There is no after. That’s what I’ve learned. The only “after” will be once I’m dead. Until then, it’s all just during.

There is no

This photo shows the last five years of my life at different weights and sizes. There’s times I’ve had more motivation. Times I had less. Times I felt fantastic. Times I hurt. Times I weighed less. Times I weighed more. Times I didn’t give a flying fuck. Times I cared too much.

In other words: Life happened.

Honestly, I loved how I looked and felt in November 2012, and I’m working towards looking and feeling that way again. But sometimes, it’s just not a priority. And that’s okay. If I were a personal trainer or a fitness model, then it would be a higher priority. But I’m not. And I’m perfectly content where I am. My life does not improve in any major way if my body fat percentage is a little lower, if I can run a little faster, if I can lift a little heavier, if I wear a smaller clothing style. It really just doesn’t matter if I’m fairly fit or super fit.

Some in the fitness industry would like to call someone like me a failure, because I’m not constantly improving or even trying to. Say I’m just making excuses or I’m not focused or determined enough. Screw ’em. I don’t say they’re failures if they can’t, won’t or don’t do other things I do. I’ve never said, “I re-tiled my kitchen floor, repaired my broken dryer, dishwasher and stove, and installed drywall by myself… what’s YOUR excuse?” How ridiculous would that be?! I love to read, I’ve tamed feral cats and literally taught an old dog new tricks, I’m a pretty damn good artist and an obsessive bargain hunter… if someone else doesn’t do those things, does that make them failures, unfocused or not determined? No. That means they have other interests. And so do I. And so do you.

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Defeating Sneaky Ninja Fat

So there I was, happily maintaining my weight after a few years, and slowly but surely, my pants started getting tight. My shirts started getting tight. I looked in the mirror, and I looked fine. WTF was going on?

Sneaky Ninja Fat. That’s what. It lurks in the shadows, waiting for me to let down my guard, and then jumps onto my back and bum, where I can’t see it until it’s melded into my flesh.

Ok, so maybe it wasn’t ninjas. It was more the result of depression after losing my brother to cancer which made me get a little lax on the eating and lose all motivation to exercise, followed by a very painful lower back injury with a few rounds of steroids and several months of physical therapy where I could only do mild stretching and a couple miles on a recumbent bike. I started to get my groove back in October, and restarted Couch to 5k to ease back into running, but then winter weather, being busy over the holidays, and wanting to enjoy holiday feasts was a good excuse in November and December.

By January, though, I was ready to kick the sneaky ninja fat in it’s sneaky ninja buttocks. I got back on MyFitnessPal, eat 1500 plus some or most of my exercise calories (usually 17-1800 or so) Monday through Friday, and take the weekends and holidays off from logging. I tend to get a little overly obsessive about logging, so regular breaks keep me at least somewhat sane. As sane as you can be when you believe in sneaky ninja fat.

I don’t eliminate anything from my diet. Still have pasta, rice, potatoes, cheeseburgers, pizza, the occasional donut and a jalapeno cheddar bagel just about every morning for breakfast. I run 2-3 times a week (weather permitting – it was twice a week during the worst of winter) and strength train usually 3 times a week. Currently following Strong Curves beginner program.

I’m about 6 pounds from my goal weight now. Up until this morning when I took my pics, I thought I was going to have to lower that goal. Now, seeing what nine pounds did, I think six more pounds will be pretty much perfect. But honestly, I’m pretty happy with how I look right now. I know from the past that I can slowly recomp while eating near maintenance. I just have a pile of clothes that I’d rather be able to wear again than have to replace. I can zip some of my skinny jeans now. They just don’t look or feel very good at the moment.

Anyway, enough babbling. Here’s the photos. Watch the sneaky ninja backfat disappear…

Front View

Front View

Side View

Back View

The change is not as noticeable from straight on front or back shots. Because it’s a ninja. Also, I can’t flex without looking constipated or having an extra chin. I’m convinced that’s the most valuable asset a fitness model can have. Looking pretty while flexing.

Front Flexed

Back Flexed

I even felt good enough about myself to put on my itsy bitsy string bikini from before I gained weight. When I tried it on last summer, I looked like an exploded can of Pillsbury and wanted to cry.

Pink Bikini

But most of all, I’m happy with my fitness progress. I’m still a lot slower than I was before all this happened, but I’m getting back there. Considering that 8 months ago, I could barely walk and thought my running days are behind me, I’m really happy that I can now run 3.1 miles in the same amount of time I ran 2.1 in October. I’ve run 10k a couple of times in the past month, and shaved about 5 minutes off my time. And I know in a race environment (first 5k of the year is next weekend) I’ll be even faster.

Running

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